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being thus great, and the wickedness thus heinous, no punishment could be too fevere to deter them from it.-And as to the 18th verfe of chapter xviii. tho' many learned men have thought it to be a prohibition of polygamy, which is also the opinion of Dr. Rutherforth, (whofe Inftitutes on Civil Law, we have lately had the pleasure of perusing, and shall mention in our next); yet Mr. Fry thinks that fenfe of it rejected by the best Commentators and having mentioned Bishop Patrick, Bishop Kidder, Mr. Ainsworth, and Mr. Poole, if, fays he, the observations of thofe learned Commentators be right, may not the fenfe of the text be Thou shalt not take thy wife's fifter and debauch her in thy wife's prefence, or before her face, thereby to vex, or be revenged of thy wife, that being the moft effectual way to vex her.

Our Author alfo citing Lev. xviii. 3, 24, 25, 28, 29, 30, together with chap, xx. verfe 23, and Deut, xii. 31, makes this remark, It is furely then altogether unreasonable to fuppofe that the things, here forbidden, were, any of them, fuch as God himself made neceffary to be done at the inftitution of marriage, in the time of man's innocence; or which the best of his own people, even the fathers of thofe very persons to whom thefe laws were especially given, frequently practised, and that not only without blame, but even with approbation.

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Befides, to throw ftill further light on this eighteenth chapter of Leviticus, our Author refers us to Jer. v. 7, 8, 9. and Ezek. xxii. 9, 10, 11, and remarks on the eleventh verfe of the twenty fecond chapter of Ezekiel, that in all our former tranflations, and agreeably to the plain fenfe of the Hebrew it ftood thus. Every one bath committed abomination with his neighbour's wife, and every one hath wickedly defiled his daughter-in-law; and in thee hath every man forced his own fifter; which manner of rendering it is also approved of in the margin of our present Bibles. He quotes alfo the affair of Reuben, Genefis xxxv. 22. and xlix. 4. with Chron. v. I; of Amnon, 1 Sam. xiii. 11, 12, 13, 14; and of Abfalom, 2 Sam. xvi. 21, 22; as violations of right, which this law intended to prevent.

Having thus far afcertained the genuine design and meaning of thofe Levitical laws, he next proceeds to obviate an objection or two; one is, that the Jews, to whofe forefathers thofe laws were given, take them, to be prohibitions of marriages, and must be supposed to understand their own laws. To this Mr. Fry replies, that all the Jewish traditional books, having been compofed long after the times of their Prophets, can be of no authority, nor deferve any regard, efpecially finçe

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our bleffed Lord himself observed, when here on earth, that the Jews, by their traditions, tranfgreffed the commandments of God, making them void and of no effect; Matth, xv. 3→6. and Mark vii. 8 to 13. Another objection is, that if marriage with near kindred is not the thing intended to be forbidden, what need could there be, after the general prohibition against defiling, to proceed fo minutely to particulars? This Mr. Fry looks upon to be the most plaufible and weighy argument that has yet been, or ever can be, offered in oppofition to the notion advanced by himself, but thinks the fol-towing confiderations are a clear and full answer to it. First, That it is ufual in the law of Mofes, to prohibit expressly fome particular aggravating circumftances of fome fins, on account of their heinous nature, the danger people may be under of being tempted to the commiffion of them, and the dreadful confequences attending them; notwithstanding these very circumftances are included under fome general prohibition. Of this he gives inftances in the cafe of prophane curfing, Exod. xxi. 17. Levit. xx. 9. Exod. xxii. 28. Lev. xix. 14; in the cafe of oppreffion, Exod. xxii. 21. and xxiii, 9. Exod. xxii. 22. Deut. xxiv. 14; of unrighteous judgment, Lev. xix. 15. Exod. xxiii. 6. Deut. xxiv. 17; of false measure, Lev. xix. 35. Exod. xx. 3, 4. Deut. v. 8, and of idol worship, Lev, xix. 4. Exod. xxxiv. 17. Exod. **. 23. And 2dly, he remarks, that the defiling of near kindred is a circumftance of the above nature, and therefore fit to be particularly prohibited.

Nor does Mr. Fry ftop here; but having fhewed, in the manner already explained, that marriages betwixt near kindred are not prohibited by the Mofaic laws, he farther afferts, that fuch marriages were well approved of under that difpenfation; and in one cafe exprefly commanded.

This he exemplifies, firft, in the cafe of Zelophehad's daughters, who, being five in number, married five brothers, who were their own coufin-germans. This cafe happened not only in the time of Mofes, by whom the Levitical laws were given, but under his infpection, and with his approbation. Numb, xxxvi. 10, 11. 2dly. In the cafe of Afcha, the daughter of that eminent fervant of God, Caleb, who gave her in marriage to Othniel, his younger brother's fon. Judg. i. 13. 3dly. In that of Ruth, mentioned Ruth iii. 9, 12, 13. whence it is evident, that the being near of kin was then made a reafon for marriage, and not an objection against it. And 4thly, as to collateral kindred by confanguinity; tho' it is bable, that marriage betwixt the nearest of them, viz. brother



and fifter, was unufual; yet from the ftory of Amnon and Tamar, it is highly probable, that fuch a marriage was not then deemed unlawful: for furely, if these laws in Leviticus had been then taken for prohibitions of marriage, King David, whofe delight it was to study and exercise himself in God's law day and night, must have been well acquainted with them. And as there are therein, commands to teach the law diligently unto their children, &c. without doubt the royal Prophet did it; and therefore, had there been therein any prohibitions of marriages with near kindred, his children certainly must have known it. And if thofe laws had been then taken for fuch prohibitions, as Tamar could not have been ignorant of it herfelf, fo muft fhe likewise have known, that her brother Amnon alfo knew it. But by her words to him, 2 Sam. xiii. 13. it is plain the knew of no law against such a marriage; from whence, therefore, it is highly probable, that these laws were not then taken in that fenfe. But 5thly, what puts this beyond all doubt, and is a full demonftration that the law relates not to marriage, is God's abfolute command to marry the fifterin-law. Deut. xxv. 5, 7, 8, 9, 10. It is plain, adds our Author, by what has been proved in the former part of this difcourse, that by the Mofaic law, brother and fifter-in-law were at liberty to marry, when the brother, at his death, left children; but if he left no child, the brother was under an express command, as above, to take her to wife.

This part of our Author's argument is alfo compleated, by folving the following inquiry; Were then no marriages for bidden in fcripture? Yes, fays Mr. Fry; at the original inftitution of marriage by Almighty God, he commanded them, with relation to it, to leave father and mother; by which it is very plain, marriages between parents and their children were prohibited, and confequently all marriages in the afcending and descending line; and this is all prohibited in the Holy Scriptures, as to marriages betwixt kindred. But fome other marriages, fuch as marriages with the Canaanites, and the inhabitants of other countries, are there clearly forbidden to the children of Ifrael, and that not in dark and doubtful expreffions, but in fuch plain words as cannot be mistaken. Deut. vii. 2, 3. And it is very evident they alfo broke this law, and were feverely reprehended for it. Ezra x. 10, 11, 12, 13, 14. Neh. xiii. 23, 25, 26, 27. 1 Kings xi. 1, 2, 3, 4. Do we find any thing like this, adds he, with respect to marriages betwixt near kindred? Do we find any where in Scripture, that any were feparated, or in the leaft blamed, on that account? Shew me but one inftance, and I will give up the whole point. The N 4 quite

quite contrary is the truth. The being near kin is there made an argument for marriage, and those who married their near kindred are commended for it. Ruth iii. 9. Numb. xxxvi. 10, 11. Tobit i. 9. and iii. 15. and iv. 12, 13.

Thus far our Author reafons, as to what appears in the Old Teftament relative to his fubject. And as to the New, he obferves, with refpect to the affair of Herod, taken notice of in Matt. xiv. 3. Mark vi. 17. and Luke iii. 19, 20. that tho' this hath been produced as an evidence of the unlawfulness of marrying a brother's wife, yet that notion will be fufficiently refuted, by only relating the true ftate of the fact, as given us by Dr. Whitby, on Matt. xiv. 3, 4. from Jofephus, and the old Jewish chronicles, which in fhort is as follows. This Herod, whilft married to the King of Petrea's daughter, took away from his brother his wife Herodias, and kept her as his own; which was a moft grofs act of adultery, and not at all a marriage. And as to the only other inftance from the New Teftament, alleged as favouring the fame notion, viz. the man fpoken of 1 Cor. v., our Author remarks, that by having the father's wife, is not there meant, marrying the father's widow, but taking the father's wife from him, and adulteroufly living with her in the father's life-time; as, is evident from 2 Cor. vii. 12. Wherefore, tho' I wrote unto you, I did it not for his caufe that had done the wrong, i. e. the fornicator's, mentioned 1 Cor. v. 1. nor for his caufe that fuffered wrong, i, e. the father of the fornicator, who was injured by his fon's wickedness. Had the Apoftle meant it of marrying the fa-1 ther's widow, he would not have faid, it was Juch fornication as was not named amongst the Gentiles; for marrying the fa-: ther's widow was not only named, but allow'd, by many Gentile nations. Taylor's Duct. Dub. I. 2. c. 1. v. 1. fect. 9. p. 174; and Dr. Hammond's Annot, on 1 Cor. v. 1. And our Author, upon the whole, concludes, that had there been any impurity in marriages between near kindred, our bleffed Saviour would have fhewn it, whofe conftant practice it was to take all opportunities to rectify erroneous opinions, and reprove wicked practices. We have an inftance of this, among many others, in the cafe of divorce, Matt. xix. 3~9. Mark x. 2. But, tho' it is certain, that the cafe of marriage betwixt brother and fifter-in-law came before him, Matt. xxii. 24, &c. Mark xii. 19, &c. Luke xx. 28, &c. yet we do not find he fpake one word against it. Neither did the holy Apostles, who were fent by him, and to whom he gave the fpifit of truth, and who kept back nothing profitable, but declared


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all the council of God, Acts xx. 20, 27, leave us one line against marriages with near kindred.

That our Readers may conceive juftly of our Author's intention, they will please to take notice, that he not only allows marriage to be unfit, and therefore unlawful, betwixt parents and children, or all in the afcending and defcending branch, as has been already obferved; but that for the preventing of uncleanness, as families are now circumstanced, and male and female children brought up together, it ought to be discountenanced betwixt brother and fifter: yet he thinks it unreasonable to extend this limitation any farther; fince, by a parity of reason, it might as well be extended to neighbours, School-fellows, and all other perfons wont to converfe freely together,

Thus of the three ftandards by which this writer tries the case of marriages between near kindred, we have presented the Reader with his manner of applying the firft. But he is no less instructive in the recourse he has to the law of nature, and to the laws of England, than in what we have thus epitomized, with refpect to the doctrine of Scripture: but for these we refer to the work itself.

We cannot conclude without obferving, that our Author seems to have wrote his title-page before he had finished his treatise, and to have forgot one article in the body, which he promised in the front of his book. For in the title, he profeffes to give us fome obfervations relating to the late act to prevent clandeftine marriages; but we do not find that his performance furnishes any thing fuitable to fuch intimation.

The Banifhment of Cupid, &c. An allegorical Poem, in the antient tafte. 4to. Is. Crowder.


O this poem the following bill of fare, by way of argument, is prefixed. The genealogy of Cupid. His power and qualities. He reigns on earth. The happy state of mortals then. The amours of Hermaphroditus and Salmacis. Hymen,-The innovations he introduced.- Venus turns prostitute, becomes pregnant, and is delivered of a • dæmon, who fills the world with diftempers.-Mercury faves mankind from deftruction.'

The Author is pleased to term his piece an allegory in the antient tafte, but we do not perceive its title to that character. Allegory, as the best critics define it, is a fable, in which, un


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